of Different Size, Shape, Material and Colors Available
Container gardening has become more popular for many different
reasons. Space may be a problem, your yard may be too hilly,conserving
water, all are reasons to consider container gardening.
Containers can be placed on a deck, by a door, anywhere
you want to draw interest or add color. Containers come
in a variety of shapes, colors, textures and designs. We'll
show some of those on the show.
We visit a facility that makes and sells beautiful pots.
The continental pots come in three colors. Moss Terra Cotta
which is red with moss color accents, Stone, a stone color
and Moss colored which is green. There are also a wide variety
of custom colors available. These pots can be used indoors
or outdoors. If used indoors use a clay or clear saucer
for drainage, the saucer isn't necessary if used outdoors.
These pots range in size from 8 inches up to 36 inches.
Some are round, some are square, there are a variety of
sizes. These pots are decorated on the side with angels,
lions, garlands, grape vines, rabbits, some have feet connected
to the bottom for easy drainage and an unusual, formal look.
We also look at concrete items. Most of the pots and planters
are also made in concrete. There are rabbits, architectural
items, urns, etc. The concrete items are a white, grayish
color. You can change their color by priming, painting then
sealing them with an outdoor sealer.
We select two pots for the front door of the Georgia Lake
After looking at the huge selection of pots we select two
that go well with the entrance of the Georgia lake house
we're landscaping on the show this year. We select two less
formal, shorter pots that will frame the front door. Since
the pots are a little shorter we'll use taller plants in
the pots. We've selected a tall grass, Red Fountain Grass,
Pennisetum Rubrum, for the middle of the pot. It holds the
red color all summer long, will get larger and will grow
blooms. The red, purple cast will last up until frost. As
a contrast we've chosen a white Marigold, Sweet Cream, these
go around the base of the grass and add even more color.
We now have upward movement with the fountain grass, we
now need a flow so we'll add Wave Petunias around the edges.
These will be extremely colorful, bloom all summer, grow
very quickly and droop over the side of the pot. And all
of these plants are heat tolerant.
for Planting Pots
We offer several tips for planting the container. First
to improve drainage add packing material or peanuts (styrofoam)
to the bottom. This not only helps drainage it is lighter
weight than soil, thus making the pot easier to move if
needed. Most of the roots of the plants we'll use won't
take more than half the pot anyway, this would be unused
soil. We first plant the tall grass in the middle, it will
be the focal point of the container. Use several plants
to form a clump and make a bold statement. Next add the
Marigolds, you can use a pattern but it usually looks better
to have a random placement. We plant them a little closer
than the instructions suggest to give the illusion of fullness.
Leave space at the edge of the container for the Petunias.
Since they grow rapidly we don't need that many of them.
Don't worry where you put them they'll grow and fill the
space quickly. Look at the whole design, if you need to
move something it is easy to do so at this point. Use a
time release fertilizer, it should last 3 or 4 months. Then
water and allow the soil to compact and close out air pockets.
If more soil is then needed, add it and you have a beautiful
container that accents the house and front door.
Container gardens come in a variety of shapes and sizes,
we show one with a large tree, a Columnar Crabapple. It
produces fruit, has beautiful blooms and around the bottom
anything can be planted. In this container we've planted
Johnny Jump ups, Violas and Tulips. These will be replaced
in the summer with Petunias, Marigolds and numerous other
flowering plants. Another container holds two different
colored Crepe Myrtle's. When they bloom they'll bloom two
different colors, pink and red. Dinosaur Kayle is planted
in this container now but will soon be replaced with summer
We look a several smaller containers. If you have a shady,
low light situation, use Caladiums, they have very large,
very colorful leaves and stand out in most situations. We
show a container containing all Cactus and Succulents. The
blooms will last from summer through winter. This would
work well in a sunroom. We show a multi-use tropical container
that has Setcretia, Purple Heart and Hawaiian Snow Bush,
Breynia which gets about 3-4 feet tall. It has very colorful
foliage (whites, reds, dark greens and purples) but doesn't
bloom. There are all kind of plants you can put in containers,
it depends on the situation and environment.
a Pot is Made
How is a pot made? The family history goes back to the 1700's,
they cam to this country from England and settled in North
Carolina. The family moved to Georgia because there were
several veins of clay in the area. At that time it was hauled
on horse and wagon so it needed to be close. A vein of clay
is usually 2-6 feet under the topsoil, if it is deeper than
that it is too expensive to mine. A vein that can be used
for pottery is usually no more than 2-6 feet deep and is
very rare and hard to find. A big expense in making pottery
is finding, mining and processing the clay. The mined clay
is yellow-bluish, once fired it turns a red, buff color.
The red clay you see on the roadside just doesn't work,
it is too sandy and won't bond. The potter takes a piece
of clay, puts it on the wheel and makes whatever piece of
pottery is needed that day. Potters are very skilled, it
takes 1-2 years for the individual to be able to make uniform
pieces that look alike. They make between 100-400 pieces
of pottery a day according to size and shape. Once the pot
is made it must sit for 2-3 hours, then someone cuts the
holes (if a strawberry jar), puts on handles, makes faces
on jack-o-lanterns in the fall, etc. The pots then sit for
8-10 hours, they're then turned upside down and the bottoms
smoothed. They're then moved to a rack and sit there until
dry, 5-10 days according to the size of the pot. All the
moisture must be out before they go into the kiln. In the
kiln they're heated to 1800 degrees F. and held for 2 hours,
they then cool. This takes about 12 hours. This kiln moves
back and forth between different stacks and is called an
envelope kiln. This one is the most modern in the country
and is all computerized.
Decorating an Outdoor Room
We also choose some outdoor furniture for the Georgia house.
Our plans call for outdoor living areas, this allows us
to be in nature and affords us the sight, colors, smell,
sound and textures of outdoors. In this case we're addressing
sitting areas in the back deck, that overlooks the lake.
The owner has chosen a taller dining set called the Bistro
set to allow everyone to be above the railing and have a
full view of the lake. Also chosen was a Cyprus sitting
group that blends well with the outdoors environment. There
are many choices in outdoor furniture today, wicker - both
traditional and the new wicker look that is made with aluminum
and poly vinyl material- cast iron, wrought iron, natural
wood, cement, the list is endless and most is attractive.
Choices should be made based upon usage, looks, comfort
and personal choice.
Once the furniture selection is made, to personalize the
sitting area, use hanging baskets, small trees, shrubs,
plants, etc. All of these will bring the outdoors in and
make everything more attractive.
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